The first of Poundstretcher’s new Pound Deals single-price discounter stores opened last week - with new MD Gerry Loughran insisting the Lalanis are not involved in the new venture.
The retailer opened a 10,000 sq ft store in Merthyr Tydfil in Wales and a 4,500 sq ft store in Chertsey, Surrey. The stores will sell a range of ambient chilled and frozen food & drink lines, as well as personal toiletries, household cleaning products, homeware, DIY, car care and baby products, party-ware and stationery.
Loughran said the openings were the first of five stores Pound Deals planned to open in the next six weeks, adding it was actively looking for sites between 4,000 sq ft and 10,000 sq ft with a view to grow the total to 50 stores over the next 12 months.
“We have over one million square feet of distribution warehousing available via Crown Crest to support expansion. The business is well-funded for future growth.”
Loughran, who spent nearly 10 years with 99p Stores, added that the Lalani family - the former owners of 99p Stores - were not involved in Pound Deals. He explained that Nadir Lalani, who founded 99p Stores in 2001, was currently using an office next to his own in Poundstretcher’s Huddersfield HQ, from which he was planning to launch a new venture in his native Tanzania and that he was also supporting his daughter who also had an office there for an internet business, which sells products sourced from Poundstretcher. Neither were related to the new Pound Deals venture, he added.
The Grocer understands the Lalanis accepted a non-compete agreement as part of the deal to sell 99p Stores to Poundland for £55m last year. Poundland is currently converting the 99p Stores to its own fascia.